Everything SF Giants fans need to know about the High-A Eugene Emeralds

Your in-depth guide to the Giants' High-A roster with not a lot of top prospects but plenty of sneaky talent.
Giants' top catching prospect Onil Perez leads the charge for the sneaky 2024 Eugene Emeralds squad.
Giants' top catching prospect Onil Perez leads the charge for the sneaky 2024 Eugene Emeralds squad. / Ben Lonergan/The Register-Guard / USA
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Everything SF Giants fans need to know about the High-A Eugene Emeralds

Position Players

Scott Bandura (#38 prospect)

Bandura is an intriguing athlete with a very projectable frame and already decent raw power. He has good speed but projects to slow down as he fills up his frame. His swing is somewhat reminiscent of Cody Bellinger and Corey Seager in terms of the lower half flexibility while having a solid uphill bat path. His plate discipline also looks good against low-A competition. This is the kind of small-school project that could break out with improvements in his frame and swing.

Justin Bench

Bench had an abbreviated 2023 season with the Giants where he played for the squad in the second half of the season but did not finish it through. His swing is more geared towards line-to-line contact with an easy swing path but not a lot of explosion. He has below-average power and will likely be a doubles than a homers guy. He has good speed and he takes advantage of it in the base paths as a solid baserunner and base stealer while also providing him versatility on defense where he can play both in the infield and outfield.

Garrett Frechette

Frechette has not performed up to par throughout his pro career but gets a shot with Eugene as their first baseman this season. Frechette has an easy-looking swing where he just flips his hips and turns his bat to generate easy pull power but has struggled to make below-average contact at best. His eye at the plate did not change much throughout the years and has struggled with chase pitches. His defense at first base is average.

Thomas Gavello

Gavello served as San Jose's utility man playing third base, second base, and behind the dish last season while leading the team in home runs. He has legitimate contact issues but his uphill swing path allows him to hit double-digit homers every season. His peak power potential might be fringy at best though. He is an average runner with a strong arm but has to work more on his craft if he wants to become a legitimate catcher.

Matt Higgins

Higgins showed why he was one of the underrated power-hitting prospects in the Giants farm system last season. His frame is already fully baked but it is a compact ball of energy. He is capable of turning on one with high exit velocities and has enough uphill in his swing path to hit long homers and plenty of doubles the other way. He does struggle with breaking balls and general contact but the power is there. Outside of the power, no one tool stands out as average with well below-average speed and below-average defense at first base.

Turner Hill

Hill got the job done last season after getting trusted to the center field role that Carter Howell vacated after he got promoted to Eugene. He's shown the ability to steal bases at a high rate and also has plus range in the outfield where he's been at least a solid defender. His bat is light but he's shown the ability to control the strike zone and take advantage of his speed by hitting the gaps.